Horse Shoe Bitters

Provenance: Ferdinand Meyer V Collection (ex: Bryan Grapentine)

There is scarce discoverable information for Horse Shoe Bitters from Collinsville, Illinois. This is a figural bottle in the shape of a horseshoe with a motif of a horse running left with three feet off the ground. By any standard, it is a great bottle that comes in amber and clear. It is also embossed “Horse Shoe Medicine Co.”

What is interesting is that there is also a Horse Shoe Bitters square (H 190). One might speculate or maybe just guess a direct relationship as the square may have been produced by the Horse Shoe Medicine Company in St. Louis prior to their move to Collinsville, Illinois in 1891. Both specimens also have the word “Patent” embossed on the bottles. We now think the square was made in New Orleans as noted in Bitters Bottles Supplement 2. Also, the square Horse Shoe Bitters was dug in Montgomery, Alabama with one complete example and 9 or 10 broken examples coming out of the hole.

The square Horse Shoe Bitters was obtained at the FOHBC National 2007 Auction in Collinsville, Illinois while the figural horseshoe bottle came from the American Bottle Auctions | Grapentine III | Auction 43.

The figural horseshoe bottle is such a favorite that there are many reproductions made by Wheaton Glass Company. If you “Google” Horse Shoe Bitters you will get page after page of listings for these later reproductions. A turquoise blue example is pictured above.

Lucille Stehman from Collinsville published a book about the history of Collinsville. In it, there is a picture of a baseball team from the Hardscrabble Mine. They were also known as the Horseshoe Bitters. They started playing in the late 1800s. The field they played on was the Hardscrabble field. There also was a saloon in Collinsville known as Hardscrabble.

The Carlyn Ring and W.C. Ham listing in Bitters Bottles is as follows:

H 189 HORSE SHOE BITTERS ( au ) // f // HORSE SHOE MEDICINE CO. ( au ) / motif horse running left with three feet off ground, ground showing / COLLINSVILLE / ILLS. // f // // b // PATENT APPLIED FOR
8 3/4 x 4 x 2
Horseshoe, Amber & Clear, LTC, Tooled lip, 2 sp, Rare
Horse Shoe Bitters Company moved from St. Louis to Collinsville, Illinois in 1891.

Read More: The wonderful Horse Shoe Bitters from Collinsville, Illinois

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